Mr K had been found guilty on six counts of making false statements in relation to trading and profit and loss accounts, and fourteen counts of using false instruments being purchase invoices. As a result of being convicted of these charges, confiscation proceedings were undertaken under the Criminal Justice Act which meant that the criminal proceeds would be the defined benefit rather than assuming a criminal lifestyle which is the case under the Proceeds of Crime Act legislation.
Unusually all the fraudulent activity had been undertaken against Mr K’s own company and he had used dummy invoices to withdraw money from the company but in fact had used substantial sums of that money to pay personal credit card billswhich had been used to purchase equipment and other costs relating to the business, so in effect he had stolen money from the company in order to pay liabilities of the company.
However, under the Criminal Justice Act on the basis that he had been convicted of fraudulent activity amounting to a total of £345,391, this was then restated to take into account the change in the value of the money using the retail prices index and this increased the total by a further £32,902. The benefit from relevant criminal conduct was therefore £378,293. It was this sum that the Crown Prosecution Service were looking to confiscate.
On the basis of the confiscation order being made in this sum, Mr K would have had to have sold the marital home.
We were able, however, to provide a persuasive argument that the monies used to make payment of the company’s liabilities would in fact not form part of the Confiscation Order. This resulted in face to face negotiations with the Asset Recovery Agency and as a consequence £107,000 was deducted from the confiscatable amount.
This therefore brought the amount repayable down to a level which could be funded by our client without recourse to selling the martial home.